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[Steering & Suspension] Replacing steering rack gaiter
I need to replace the steering rack gaiter on one side as it's split.

Is this just a case of removing the track rod end, pulling the old gaiter off and sliding the new one on? Worth replacing the track rod end at the same time?

I presume if I don't touch the locknut on the track rod I won't bugger up the tracking (which I've just had done Undecided )?
When you take off the track rod count the number of turns when you take it off then when refitting you should be able to fit back exactly. Why change the track rod end if its okay?
Cheers. Just thought it's a reasonably cheap part and would save the hassle of doing the job again.
If you do replace it make sure you get a decent replacement.
Well this is more difficult than I thought.

It's the LH gaiter, which is actually in two parts, a smooth boot at the end of the track rod, and a "bellows" inside that. Between them, there's a part that attaches to what I think is the ram for the power steering, which sits behind the rack itself.

I've taken the nut off that holds the ram on to the part between the two rubber bits, and separated it, but now I have a track rod hanging free and I'm still not sure how to either get this out or get the other part off.
Started a new thread about removing the inner tie rod as I thought it warranted a separate thread:
So as per the other thread, I've got the tie rod and inner tie rod end off.

That still leaves the part with the stud for the power steering ram.

It's probably possible to slide the gaiter over this part, but I've tried and it's very difficult and runs the risk of tearing the new gaiter. It's not obvious how to remove this part but I'm guessing it's an interference fit and so I'm going to borrow a bearing puller tomorrow and try and pull it off.

I also had to clean all the rust off the tie rod and put a small lead-in on the outer end because there's no obvious way of separate the tie rod and inner ball joint so the new gaiter (ID: 10mm) needs to slide down the length of the tie rod (OD: 20mm). Having done this in the vice, I then realised it nees to be done on the car, since the inner tie rod tool won't go on to fit it with the gaiter on.
All done and finished. I couldn't pull the part for the power steering ram off, so the gaiter had to go over it. I soaked it in a bucket of boiling water for a couple of minutes to make it a bit more supple and it went on with a bit of stretching and swearing.

Everything else back on, including new outer tie rod end without too much difficulty.
[-] The following 2 users say Thank You to leftfootleashed for this post:
  • polar, valvejtw
I really struggled to get the boot over the ram attachment and ripped the first boot even after the hot water treatment. The second boot nearly went the same way ,then I had a brain wave and heated the boot in place with a hair drier , this way you can keep it hot and you don't have to rush it like you do using hot water.
[-] The following 1 user says Thank You to Riggsy for this post:
  • valvejtw

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